Yesterday, I listed some questions that ff-ers would want answered.
For both teams determining the 2nd & 3rd WRs was an issue.
The game provided no statistical answers for the Steelers although starter Cedric Wilson was thrown to deep a couple times. Nate Washington caught two passes including a 27-yd TD.
Right now, they are #s 2 and 3 respectively.
For Miami, Marty Booker is the #2 and Wes Welker the #3. Booker left early in the game with a head injury. While Derek Hagan did see more time after that, Wes Welker appeared to be the main beneficiary of the extra passes.
Based on one game, Welker has improved his standing. Plus, if you are in a league that counts return yardage, he is a must-grab. He looked great returning kicks and punts.
A second question for the Steelers was Willie Parker's role in goal line plays. He did not receive an opportunity as the one time the Steelers were inside the ten, Batch threw a 7-yd TD to WR Hines Ward.
However, if the refs had seen Miami's challenge on TE Heath Miller's 87-yd TD, then we would have seen 1st and goal from the 2. We need to wait another week but 115 yards rushing makes that OK.
Thirdly, back-up QB Charlie Batch looked perfectly capable of running the Steelers offense. 15-25 for 205 yards with 3 TDs and 17 yards rushing was excellent.
If Roethlisberger proves to be fragile this season, Batch would be an acceptable starter each week - somewhere in the 15-20 range.
Miami's other questions involved QB Daunte Cullpepper and RB Ronnie Brown.
For Brown, he scored two TDs, and there is no doubt he is the goal line back. On one TD, he lined up as the fullback and punched the ball in. He also caught three passes and should be a yardage stud this season.
As for Culpepper, he looked rusty and threw a few balls at his receivers ankles while they were turned the other way.
His communication with stud-hopeful Chris Chambers was also off.
I expect those to improve with more familarity. Without that caveat, he would have looked bad. 18-37 doesn't cut it, and INTs for TDs in close games doesn't either.
Fool's Gold Candidates for Week Two
Steeler's TE Heath Miller: TEs are not good bets for back-to-back weeks of 100+ yards and a TD. He shouldn't disappoint for the season though.
Also, a 3rd WR grabbing TDs in consecutive weeks isn't likely especially when the #2, Cedric Wilson didn't catch any balls.
Expect a big game from Wilson next week. Saying "a bigger game" would be too easy. One reception accomplishes that!
Miami: WR Wes Welker. He impressed, but his increased presence in the passing game while returning kicks and punts needs to be demonstrated again.